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Does anyone know where to buy an A/B Switch for three Cat-5 cables?

Posted on 2006-10-19
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
Good Day Experts,

I am trying to find an A/B switch so I can switch from my home computer to my laptop for internet access.  FYI - I have cable internet from bresnan and I think that the cat-5 cable coming from the cable modem to my home computer is a crossover cable and of course I would need the switch to be capable of handling the crossover cable.

Many Thanks,

Ellsworth2000
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Question by:ellsworth2000
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by:Lee W, MVP
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You don't want an AB switch get a router - then you can connect both at the same time (I've not seen any AB Switches since routers allow more than one computer.
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by:Callandor
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You can get one here: http://www.processor.com/ShowcaseAds/Detail.aspx?adid=966&pcid=11032&cid=11032&guid=7ae3fddb451643788af0a0402097bb59&Return=Close, but if you have a cable modem, I would recommend a 4-port router to have both access the internet simultaneously: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16833114007
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by:ellsworth2000
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well, eventually when we upgrade our internet to DSL we will do that.  Our current I-net speed will not handle two computers, or well it will its just that the internet will be extremely slow.

Thanks,

Ellsworth
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by:Lee W, MVP
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You misunderstand how this works -

You won't notice you have two computers unless you use them both on the internet at the same time.  If you don't do anything on the desktop, it won't use the internet connection signficantly.
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by:Callandor
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Using a router with both machines plugged in will not slow down your internet access, as long as only one machine is being used to access the internet (no browser open or streaming applications).
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by:Lee W, MVP
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You said you have a cable connection from Bresnan - these people?
http://www.bresnan.com/unst/products/hsd/

If so, do you have a specific cable plan?  Because if not, the plan outlined above can support DOZENS of computers ALL working at the same time on the internet (hundreds probably).
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garycase earned 200 total points
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As noted above, you misunderstand how a router works.   It will make NO difference when only one computer is using the internet at a time ... and in most cases you won't notice any difference even if both are using it [the exception being if both are doing high-bandwidth downloads; streaming video; etc. --> and even then you may not notice it].

I would not buy the router Callandor suggested (it's not a bad router ... but for the same price you can get a good wireless router) ==> buy this instead:  http://www.buy.com/prod/NETGEAR_54Mbps_Wireless_G_Router_WGR614NA/q/loc/57628/10342463.html

Then, if you want, you can add this to your laptop:  http://www.buy.com/prod/netgear_wg511_wireless_pc_card_54mbps/q/loc/57628/10341037.html
... and the laptop will be connected wirelessly :-)

I assure you that you will NOT notice any difference in your internet connection by using a router.   In addition, you'll then be able to easily share resources between your laptop and desktop [copy files; print on your desktop's printer from the laptop; backup from one computer to the other; etc.].
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by:Callandor
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Hey, those specials from buy.com are time-limited (10/31) and require sending in a rebate ;-)
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by:garycase
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Yes, I know ... and I HATE rebates !!   But it does make more sense, if ellsworth2000's going to spend $30 for a router, to get a wireless one :-)

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by:ellsworth2000
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First Off, thank you all for your help :D!!!

A wireless router is what I'm going to use as well as upgrading to DSL though, if you would like to know why I want to Isolate the two computers below is my explanation.

Thank you all for your help:D!!!

Ellsworth








This is why I wanted to Isolate the two computers>>>>>>>I did a speed test from wdc.speakeasy.net and the maximum download was 230+kbps and upload was for some reason 700kbps.  I did this test again and the same results appeared(not exactly the same but close).  So that is why I'm worried about the performance of the internet unless 230kbps is sufficient in which, i know that my browsing at home is much slower than at work.  Also if two comps were connected to a router at the same time and if only one was browsing wouldn't the other computer still have automatic updates for Windows, AV, Spyware, etc... accessing the internet as well as the computer that is browsing?  Which that is why I'd like to find a cheap A/B rj/45 switch so i could isolate the two with out having to stop the auto updates.  
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by:Lee W, MVP
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Yes, updates can occur at any time, but in most cases, they typically are not that big and occur late at night.  

Further, speed tests on the internet aren't reliable.  Now, SpeakEasy is generally considered among the best from what I've heard, but you are still relying on the fact that if the speakeasy site or the route to it is busy, things will be slower... Your cable connection, potentially, is VERY fast, but it too could be saturated by others in your area - cable is shared among a neighborhood, so you could have tested at a time when others in the neighborhood were doing things to "eat up" the bandwidth.  Frankly, I'd call your cable company and complain.
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by:garycase
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If you're getting 700k up but only 230 down something isn't working right => I agree with leew:  complain to the cable company.   But having said that, Windows updates are done in a "bandwidth-sensitive" mode => they will not download if your connection has other open sockets (i.e. if you're using the internet).  So they should not interfere with you at all.   And most other automatic updates (A/V, etc.) can be set to happen at an hour of your choosing -> so just set them for 3AM (or whatever is a good time for you).   You are simply NOT likely to notice any difference with/without the router !!
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by:pgm554
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Agree 4 port router is dirt cheap these days.
Best way to go.
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by:ellsworth2000
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Will do thanks guys :D
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